Idiocy in America: Amtrak Photo Contestant Arrested for Snapping Pictures of Amtrak Trains
Armed with his Canon 5D and his new Lensbaby lens, photographer Duane Kerzic set out to win Amtrak’s annual photo contest this week, hoping to win $1,000 in travel vouchers and have his photo published in Amtrak’s annual calendar.Much more here.
He ended up getting arrested by Amtrak police; handcuffed to a wall in a holding cell inside New York City’s Penn Station, accused of criminal trespass.
Kerzic says he was hardly trespassing because he was taking photos from the train platform; the same one used by thousands of commuters everyday to step on and off the train.
“The only reason they arrested me was because I refused to delete my images,” Kerzic said in a phone interview with Photography is Not a Crime on Friday.
“They never asked me to leave, they never mentioned anything about trespassing until after I was handcuffed in the holding cell.”
In fact, he said, the only thing they told him before handcuffing him was that “it was illegal to take photos of the trains.”
Obviously, there is a lack of communication between Amtrak’s marketing department, which promotes the annual contest, called Picture Our Trains, and its police department, which has a history of harassing photographers for photographing these same trains.
Note: This is what Bruce Schneier calls the "War on the Unexpected" -- people in positions of authority in this country have clearly lost their freekin' minds. -ferg